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Viettel sets sights on Belarus

Released at: 09:29, 02/12/2014

Viettel sets sights on Belarus

Telecommunications project announced during Party General Secretary's visit.

by Thong Dat

Viettel, the military-owned mobile services provider, will invest in a telecommunications project in Belarus.

The move was revealed during the two-day official visit by Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong to Belarus last week. Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko confirmed that the country would provide the conditions necessary for Viettel’s investment.

Belarus recorded GDP growth of 2.1 per cent in 2013, to $150 billion, and GDP per capita of $16,000. Compared to other countries where Viettel has invested, Belarus has a relatively low population, of about 9.6 million people.

Viettel has expanded its presence in seven countries and picked up 68 million customers, in Cambodia, Laos and Timor Leste, as well as Haiti, Mozambique, Peru and Cameroon. The group’s vision is consolidate its operations in the East African region as it has already been granted a license in Tanzania, East Africa’s second-largest telecommunications market after Kenya. It has withdrawn, however, from a planned stake purchase in Telkom Kenya, which is 30 per cent owned by the Kenyan Government.

Total revenues from Viettel’s overseas businesses in 2013 reached nearly $8 billion. For the first nine months of this year Viettel Global, the international investment branch of Viettel, made net profits of VND1.47 trillion ($68.7 million), an increase of 37 per cent compared to the same period last year.

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